One of the more iconic retro gaming companies that I grew up with was Sierra. The famous Space Quest, Police Quest, King’s Quest, Eco Quest, and Hero’s Quest games made a big splash in their day. The name changed from Hero’s Quest to Quest for Glory due to copyright issues, but Sierra really nailed the point-and-click puzzle adventure gaming experience. Many other indie games such as Mixed Up Mother Goose, The Incredible Machine, and Freddy Pharkas: Frontier Pharmacist, evidenced this in addition to the wide variety of other genres it offered.
Many of the older games were text based until VGA remakes or adaptations became available. For those unfamiliar with the concept, there was a time when the gamer had to almost read the minds of the game makers as they typed commands like “look”, “ask about”, “use computer chip on...”, and so forth to progress through the story. Even when you knew what you wanted to do, you had to give the command in a way that the prompt system would recognize. This lent itself to sometimes tedious but almost always rewarding game play.
This article will focus briefly on game one of the Quest for Glory series as an influential force in the development of the RPG genre.
This game took the idea of character stats and progression forward in a way that fanned my imagination, and opened up possibilities like never before. I could fight with sword and shield over oncoming goblins, trolls, sauruses, witches, and curses. I could sneak and deceive, or I could even cast a multitude of spells. Over the five game history, a person could import a character upwards and onward; once a game was completed the same character with the same end-game stats could be loaded into the next game. Although initially completed using a floppy disk, this can now be completed by saving the .sav file in the correct drive (usually the C drive). This created a very incentivized approach to the gameplay for me, because how you approached your character could change the next five games.
As is the case with many RPG games, it is also common to create cross class characters in the Quest for Glory Franchise - for example, a fighter who knows magic, or a thief who knows magic. This is because later in the games, certain cross class approaches allowed for access to class specific quests, items, powers, spells, and so forth; (minor spoiler alert) the ultimate culmination for a fighter with magic would be to access the paladin class hinted at during Quest for Glory II, Trial By Fire. So, although each game is beatable by each class, cross class playing and replaying became a slight obsession of mine. For this reason, I reveal to the world for the first time some of the glitches in the first game that allow for some janky game experiences.
In character creation, the gamer could allocate 50 points to skills already existing in a given class. For the cost of 15 points, one could invest in learning a new non-class skill. Usually the game only allowed for a player to obtain a few of the non-class skills because the interface increases or decreases skills by increments of five. What you see below however are non-class skills reduced to one.
By right clicking on a skill, pushing page up, and left clicking on the skill, new skills could be learned for fewer points. This allows a fighter to gain access to all skills at the start of the game. Having even one point allows the skills to max at 100 by the end of the game if you are willing to grind enough. Using this glitch allows the character to obtain all the skills much quicker, and when newer skills are introduced in later games (such as swimming or pick pocketing), spending the 50 or 100 points to obtain them is easier as all previous skills were already obtained by the second game. Tip: don’t invest in swimming, you can learn it for free in-game.
Here is a starting mage.
A mage with thief skills is different than a thief with magic in the first game due to an additional starting spell, zap. By exploiting the page up and page down functions on the keyboard to take the allocation system “off-track”, as it were, one could allocate negative points to a skill. Right click, push page up, and then left click as many times as you want as your points go negative and your point bank goes into the hundreds.
I never took this very far in game because I wanted my character to have every stat maxed out each game. Using this approach however, could allow a character to surpass the point cap even at the start of the game.
Having negative 300 something points in throwing can’t be a good thing but I’m sure this mage didn’t mind.
One of the most iconic adventure games in my experience, Quest for Glory is one game I can’t leave alone, even decades after it's inception.
Hopefully these glitches will offer a new experience for those familiar with the game and perhaps the short overview offered here may interest those unfamiliar with the saga. Although each game’s combat system differs, and even though the game play changes into the fifth game, the puzzles, worlds, and adventures should be more than enough to captivate those willing to foray into the fantasy, imagination, humor, and mythology that Quest for Glory helps bring to life.